Total Pageviews

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Southern Ocean

The last of of our seven seminar tour around Australia finished at 4.30 yesterday (evaluation). The videos seemed to make good sense to people. The cases of overlap-negotiation we'd selected from the film of Mayor Felicity Ann Lewis and CEO Mark Searle at Marion City Council went down particularly well, with practitioners' analyses adding to insights about the process of political-management leadership.
John and I went back to our hotel - The Chifley, Adelaide - showered and took a tram to the beach at Glenelg, met an old academic friend of John's - Chris Paris - drank good beer from bottles - Coopers sparkling ale - watched the sun set below the Southern Ocean and enjoyed a celebratory meal of champagne and a good Shiraz with perfectly cooked 500gr steaks at the Glenelg BBQ Inn in honour of scholarly work with practitioners. This Bond-ish product placement serves as a memo.
Within a drink of meeting Chris I'd learned not only that he's a keen fisherman. John had already told me and he'd chatted knowledgeably with an old bloke squidding on the pier - smears of black ink on the deck - who'd come from Essex, where I was born, but...but that he was a campaigner for the conservation of brown trout (most don't know the difference between them and the rainbow) and a keen dryfly fisherman who'd enjoyed my stepfather on TV - and remembered the shed. "So you're his stepson. Wow!" Well that got me more unearned beer and a reminder that there are still places in the world where you don't have to be rich to enjoy The way of a trout with the fly - one of Jack's favoured fishing books for all his rueful amusement at the bizarre earnestness of the Skues-Halford controversy.
What was so pleasing was Chris' optimism about the prospects for restoring the habitat of wild trout - my favourite fish and the first live fish that ever I saw while I was living at Bignell's Cottage in Itchen Abbas, still with the hush-mark on my upper lip trailing clouds of glory, staring down from a low footbridge over the Itchen by Grey's fishing hut, swimming with the water crowfoot, holding station above the golden gravel.Bay, Mum, me and Gaga 1945
Bay, my sister, my mother Barbara, and my great grandmother, Lucy,at Itchen Abbas in 1945
We'd had a minor mishap the night before the Adelaide seminar. Sydney Airport had a computer hiccup at check-in; long queues and all luggage labels written in longhand at the desk with staff struggling with unfamiliar use of pens. At Adelaide I waited with growing anxiety by the emptying carousel. My bag had gone missing with my laptop charging cable and speakers - vital to our teaching. QUANTAS help-desk gave me a nightbag with tooth things and pyjams but I had to wear my shirt and underwear another day. In the morning John phone-found a local Apple dealer - Next Byte. While he and Julie Kerr, of the Local Government Association of South Australia, welcomed arriving participants, I taxi'd to Rundell Mall, got my cable and we were ready to roll at The Pavilion with seconds to spare; a local friend of John's having driven over with excellent speakers.
My bag was in my hotel by the end of the day. "You should never travel without cables in your hand luggage" said Lin in the kitchen in Handsworth as I chatted with her on Skype from Adelaide airport QUANTAS lounge. She brought Oscar dog to the screen camera but he's sees with his nose and doesn't do digital. Lin's email:
I'm not just a pretty face, you know!
In fact I'm not a pretty face at all at the moment - I'm ill with flu and I feel awful. Amy and Guy are both ill too, though I don't think it's the same bug. Kiz was ill last week and stayed here for 3 days - most of the time in bed in the spare room. She's home now, but has had to go to the doctor, who told her to expect the bug to last for 8 - 10 days. Richard says I've still got sickness to look forward to, if I've caught it from Kiz. I hope mine's a different bug!
Auntie Barbara's given us a goose for Xmas. Richard went to Mom and Dad's to fetch it this evening and it's now in Jo's freezer. Not sure where it was poached from. lol
Gosh, the time's gone quickly. Only just over a week till you come home! See you soon. L x
Down to the shore on the evening tram to Glenelg - every colour under the sun
* ** ** * A letter about the Victoria Jubilee Allotments dated 18/11/09 from Andrew Hogben, forwarded by John Tyrell in Handsworth after he'd received it from Cllr Martin Mullaney, Birmingham's Cabinet Member for Leisure Sport and Culture:
Dear Councillor Mullaney. I have spoken to the developer's representative today who confirms that although recent heavy rain has delayed the importation of the final loads of topsoil for the plots; this will be completed along with service connections to the building which is now in place, landscaping around the building; the ripping of the plot areas and provision of turf between plots, by Christmas. At the same time I am expecting a draft transfer plan today from Persimmon which I will forward to Education and our Survey section tomorrow for verification, prior to preparing the authority to transfer the various parcels of land to the Council i.e. the open space, playing fields and allotments. Persimmon have agreed that if necessary the Council could be licensed to occupy the allotments land early in the new year, if the transfer is delayed for any reason e.g. ordnance survey query proposed boundaries identified for the transfer. I'll keep you informed of progress. Regards, Andy Hogben, Principal Landscape Development Officer 0121 303 4764
Adelaide: flying over Glenelg pier where we were the evening before


  1. Reishas pilsner is the one to drink. As for wine is their a bad Aussie one? Famous stepdad eh? Commisserations on lost undies, in that heat 2 days in the same shirt is an infringement of human rights!


Back numbers

Simon Baddeley